What’s in a name?
Not much, unless you’ve made a name for yourself and become a star in your own right.
The personal nomenclature in Việt Nam being what it is, the relative anonymity of being one of the crowd becomes somewhat problematic (or advantageous, depending) when you have a name that is very popular, and you are at a wedding reception where many guests are likely to turn their heads if or when your name, or their name, is called out.
Try, calling out “Nguyễn ơi, or Hà ơi,” at a wedding reception. Got the picture?
Many young people are getting the picture, literally, because they want to ensure that they are not confused for someone else when their gift envelopes are opened. The desire for clarity about one’s identity gets acute when you consider that what you give is recorded for a reciprocal gesture when it is your turn to receive. Got the picture, now?
Well, those who do get it have begun pinning passport-sized photos of themselves to the envelope, so the gift recipients know exactly who’s given it.
Got it, or do we have to draw you a picture? — VNS